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Helium isotope signature of lithospheric mantle xenoliths from the Permo-Carboniferous magmatic province in Scotland — no evidence for a lower-mantle plume

By
L. A. Kirstein
L. A. Kirstein
Department of Earth Sciences, Vrije Universiteit, 1085 De Boelelaan, 1081 HV Amsterdam, the Netherlands (e-mail: linda.kirstein@glg.ed.ac.uk)School of GeoSciences, Grant Institute, University of Edinburgh EH9 3JW, UK
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T. J. Dunai
T. J. Dunai
Department of Earth Sciences, Vrije Universiteit, 1085 De Boelelaan, 1081 HV Amsterdam, the Netherlands (e-mail: linda.kirstein@glg.ed.ac.uk)
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G. R. Davies
G. R. Davies
Department of Earth Sciences, Vrije Universiteit, 1085 De Boelelaan, 1081 HV Amsterdam, the Netherlands (e-mail: linda.kirstein@glg.ed.ac.uk)
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B. G. J. Upton
B. G. J. Upton
School of GeoSciences, Grant Institute, University of Edinburgh EH9 3JW, UK
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I. K. Nikogosian
I. K. Nikogosian
Department of Earth Sciences, Vrije Universiteit, 1085 De Boelelaan, 1081 HV Amsterdam, the Netherlands (e-mail: linda.kirstein@glg.ed.ac.uk)
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Published:
January 01, 2004

Abstract

Noble gas studies of well-characterized spinel-peridotite-facies lithospheric mantle xenoliths and garnet megacrysts from Scottish Permo-Carboniferous dykes, sills and vents demonstrate that the mantle beneath Scotland during the late Palaeozoic was more radiogenic than the source of mid-ocean ridge basalts (MORB). The samples were collected from the Northern Highland Terrane and the Midland Valley Terrane, which vary from Archaean-Proterozoic to Proterozoic-Palaeozoic in age. Helium isotope ratios of between 3Ra and 6 Ra (Ra = atmospheric ratio) indicate that there has been time-integrated U-Th enrichment of the subcontinental mantle. This enriched mantle was preferentially melted following the transition from early Palaeozoic compression to late Palaeozoic extensional tectonics. Helium isotope ratios provide no clear evidence for the presence of undegassed plume-type mantle beneath this part of Scotland during the Permo-Carboniferous. The measured helium ratios do not discount the presence of a low-helium plume similar to those of the European Cenozoic volcanic province. A passive origin, however, is preferred for the Permo-Carboniferous magmatism due to the protracted activity, relatively small-extruded volumes of mafic magma and the low-helium isotope ratios measured.

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Contents

Geological Society, London, Special Publications

Permo-Carboniferous Magmatism and Rifting in Europe

M. Wilson
M. Wilson
Leeds University, UK
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E.-R. Neumann
E.-R. Neumann
University of Oslo, Norway
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G. R. Davies
G. R. Davies
Vrije University, The Netherlands
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M. J. Timmerman
M. J. Timmerman
Universität Potsdam, Germany
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M. Heeremans
M. Heeremans
University of Oslo, Norway
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B. T. Larsen
B. T. Larsen
Norsk Hydro ASA/Saga Petroleum ASA, Norway
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Geological Society of London
Volume
223
ISBN electronic:
9781862394711
Publication date:
January 01, 2004

GeoRef

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